Moroccan radish and cucumber salad

Moroccan radish and cucumber salad

Flavors of Morocco

Peppery radishes, crisp cucumbers, and leafy herbs make a perfect salad addition for any Moroccan themed meal, drenched in an orange and cardamom scented yogurt dressing with a hint of mint that compliments the robust flavors of any Moroccan dish.

Use whatever herbs are freshly available from your garden or from your local farmer. Fresh is the key for this lively and nutritious salad.

Orange cardamom dressing: 

Best to make the dressing the day before you intend to use it to allow the flavors to develop.

  • orange zest, 1 tablespoon, chopped The remaining zest reserved for finishing.
  • 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 6 cardamom seeds, bashed  (or 1/4 teaspoon ground)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon grated (using a micro plain) shallot
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sherry vinegar  1 tablespoon honey,orange blossomif available
  •  1 ¼ cup Greek style yogurt
  • 1 tablespoons chopped fresh mint (or 1 ½ teaspoons dried)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped orange zest
  • orange zest and toasted sesame seeds for finishing

Zest the orange before squeezing and set the zest aside. Squeeze the orange and place the orange juice in a small stainless sauce pan and add the cardamom seeds (or ground) and bring to a slow simmer for two minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

Place the lemon juice, grated shallot, salt, pepper, sherry vinegar, and honey in a glass or stainless bowl. Mix together. Stain the orange juice into the bowl and discard the cardamom seeds. Stir until well combined.

Add the Greek yogurt to the bowl and fold everything together. Fold in the mint and chopped orange zest. Taste and add additional salt to taste. Place in a glass container, cover, and refrigerate until well chilled.

The salad: Choose any 4 of the following suggested herbs and greens.

  • broad leaf parsley
  • celery leaves
  • radish leaves
  • dill
  • mint
  • lemon basil
  • rocket
  • mustard greens
  • 8 large red radishes, sliced paper thin
  • 3 slender cucumbers, sliced paper thin

Pluck the freshest leaves from your selected herbs and place them in a bowl. A few hands full will serve 4. Cover and refrigerate until you are ready to assemble the salad. 

Slice the radishes and cucumbers, separate the slices, toss, cover and refrigerate.

Chill salad plates well before you assemble the salad.

Assembling and serving the salad:
Place a small handful of the herbs and greens on the chilled plates. Mound a portion of the radishes and cucumbers in the center of the herbs and greens.

Dollop the dressing over the radishes and cucumbers, scatter some orange zest over the salad, and sprinkle the toasted sesame seeds over all.

Serve at once while still chilled with additional dressing in a pitcher set on the table.

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